By Matt Robinson
This ebook is ready reminiscence -- reminiscence as a poetic shape in which refractions of loss, restoration, discovery and identification shape an imaginitive reshaping of the previous. In uncooked brushstrokes, Robinson files the sluggish cascade of occasions and characters slipping throughout the skinny membrane of expertise, shaping our histories. whilst, he experiments with sort and shape in a superbly sinuous writing. With this, his first publication, Robinson makes a incredible debut at the North American literary degree.
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Settled. with the beginnings of zinnias' reds, evidence of a comfort in the ground. 59 ij ways of looking at fish, after at another time or place the other dozen might be more readily available, but for now, cooking alone, all her kitchen will allow is this one version, and so i think of fish as simply the way in which my hands become my mother's summer-slick with august, flour, spices, and all the while there is the sizzling mimicry of cast iron and butter; a cool moon fading into the dark heat, so standing at the counter between the sink and the stove, i hesitate, refuse to rinse my hands and instead let the breading cast and harden, but in the interim the butter has melted away, and i can reach only for something transparent and black at the edge, it is only after the slap and sizzle of the fillet that i rediscover the butter and notice the flakes falling away from between my fingers.
Between your flesh and this dusting of snow (which makes this, your winter, real) lies a name, a stone. when, on Christmas eve, these flakes fell around and on us as we walk (cold dust upon our flesh) you again become concrete, •48- (heavy on my flesh, heavy as a stone), completed: flesh and dust, not name alone. 49 burial It was not meant to hurt. It had been made for happy remembering By people who were still too young To have learned about memory. —from "A Short Film" by Ted Hughes it was not meant to hurt, as such, that ritual departure, no, it was instead a release: a place for tears and words and suits; a cause for dressing up the ties and cuffs an awkwardness become physical.
Now, in hindsight, it's quite obvious it was never really mine to begin with; it was only another temporary situation, a sort of holding pattern, a cataloguing, and really, that first signature should have been enough to let us both know that, that, perhaps, presents aside, it wasn't — that giving isn't — always permanent, that things change hands, and so those first, perhaps, most interesting, of all the words contained within are there — inside the cover; in a fine hand, written, and the cover, too, is a kind of hint: black, finely tooled and gold-embossed; almost casket-like for all intents and purposes, it was a gift from a time when such things were commonplace, in fact, there are even dead blooms and other ironies folded between the pages, but despite all that, it has aged better than you, than us.
A Ruckus of Awkward Stacking by Matt Robinson